Bruce Knotts

I was born and raised in California. I got my Bachelor’s Degree in History from Pepperdine University and my Master’s Degree in International Education from the Monterey Institute of International Studies; both in California. I was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Ethiopia. I worked for Raytheon in Saudi Arabia (1976-80) and on a World Bank contract in Somalia (1982-4), before I joined the Department of State as a U.S. diplomat in 1984. I had diplomatic assignments in Greece, Zambia, India, Pakistan, Kenya, Sudan, Cote d’Ivoire and The Gambia, where he was Deputy Chief of Mission. While in Cote d’Ivoire, I served as the Regional Refugee Coordinator for West Africa covering 16 African nations from Mauritania to Nigeria, but focusing on the refugees from the conflicts in Sierra Leone, Liberia and later in Cote d’Ivoire itself. This was the assignment where I had my most sustained contact with the UN system. I evaluated programs and recommended funding for UNHCR, WFP, UNICEF, UNDP, WHO and many NGOs (non-governmental organizations) working with refugees in West Africa. I worked closely with several UN Special Representatives and observed UN peacekeeping operations in Sierra Leone from 2000-2003. In 2004, I was elected to the Board of GLIFAA (Gays and Lesbians in Foreign Affairs Agencies). I retired from the Foreign Service in 2007 and joined the Unitarian Universalist United Nations Office (UU-UNO) as its Executive Director at the beginning of 2008. I began the UU-UNO’s very successful LGBT advocacy program in 2008. This program continues to build important coalitions to end global homophobia. I have been chair of the UN NGO Committee on Human Rights since June 2010 and of the Faith and Ethics Network for the International Criminal Court since April 2010. I am the President and CEO of the NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace and Security and a member of the NGO UN Security Council Working Group. In December 2013, I was elected to the Board of the NGO UN Committee on Sustainable Development. I married Isaac Humphrie in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada in August 2006. Isaac is from Dallas, Texas and he works in event planning, production, logistics, and customer service for events and shows such as New York Fashion Week and similar shows across the country and around the world.